Job Interview Process: 13 Tips Recruiting Leaders Should (Already) Know
Having solid interviewing skills is important—you will avoid making bad hiring decisions and incurring associated costs that come along with a failed hire. The process must be executed in a thoughtful and constructive way, while keeping both recruiters and hiring managers on the same page. There is a significant list of simple best practices around timing, preparation, scheduling, and other aspects of the job interview process that every company should be keeping in mind.
In today’s day and age, companies like Glassdoor are now offering a section for rating the job interview process at a company, and highlighting the companies that are doing an exceptional job. We expect to see more of this type of review system, with the “Yelp-ification” of well, everything.
Interviewing Best Practices for Recruiters and Managers
Here is a list of the top job interview tips you need to follow to build (or maintain) a reputation as one of the best companies to interview with.
1. Educate recruiters/hiring managers on interviewing best practices
The interview is a deciding factor for both the interviewee and the interviewer, and candidates expect a certain quality of interaction from recruiters and hiring managers. According to the Talent Board, few recruiters and managers are trained on how to give a good interview. Providing basic best practices for interviewers could improve your candidate experience and the job interview process as a whole.
2. Standardize the format of your interview process
Much confusion and miscommunication during the interview process that causes negative marks on your candidate experience could be avoided with standardization.
Creating, at the very least, a template for what should transpire during the process of hiring for a particular position could ensure a greater level of control. Plus, standardization is key for managing and improving performance. Tweaks can be made to the global job interview process and then examined in relation to other metrics such as time to fill, cost per hire, and more.
3. Ensure interviewers conduct due diligence prior to the interview
It is often very clear to candidates when recruiters or hiring managers know nothing about them. Someone from the interviewer side coming into an interview unprepared or under-prepared can easily result in candidates perceiving the interview as unfair. Recruiters should always conduct candidate research, and provide the appropriate information to hiring managers prior to their interview with candidates. Recruiting software can centralize this information in an easily accessible location.
4. Document what happens during the interview
It’s not uncommon for candidates to speak with many different interviewers, and for employers to interview multiple candidates. This can result in lots of confusion from the hiring side, and potentially harm candidate experience. Requiring all interviewers to document what happened during the interview and provide internal feedback can cut down on resources needed to hire candidates and also make the experience better for them. Recruiting software can streamline this with automated surveys and questionnaires.
5. Equip employers and hiring managers with the necessary tools
Standardizing the interview process, making sure recruiters and hiring managers have the right information about candidates, and ensuring information about the interview is recorded after the fact can all be facilitated with recruiting software. Putting the right systems in place will improve the overall quality of your candidate experience.
6. Simplify the process for interview scheduling
New scheduling software tools have made setting up meetings so much easier than ever before. More and more, salespeople are using these tools. Considering that many pundits advise you treat your candidates like you’d treat customers, it makes sense to investigate this trend. Think about leveraging one of these tools or finding a way to share a calendar with availability, so candidates can choose a time that best suits them. The easier you make it to find a time that works for both of you, the better the experience for the candidate.
7. Be flexible and innovative with “where” interviews take place
Technology has in many ways eliminated the need for candidates and recruiters to be in the same room for an interview. Video chat is more than acceptable in many scenarios—especially when meeting in person would be a hassle. According the data from the Talent Board, 46% of the 50 companies that won CandEs awards in 2015 reported that they preferred video interviewing. Not surprisingly, with the popularity of the technology rising, this number was an increase from the previous year.
8. Be mindful of the interview process length
The Talent Board’s research found that candidates prefer a short interview process. 79% of companies surveyed had only 1-2 interviews per position, an improvement from the previous year.
9. Prepare candidates as best as possible prior to the interview
Many candidates are going into their interviews without knowing who they’ll be speaking to or what will be discussed. The clearer you are upfront with the candidate, the better experience they’ll have. Some companies even send a detailed agenda to the interviewee prior to the interview date. The agenda may include the types of interviews that will take place (sequential, panel, etc.) and with whom candidates will be speaking. Often, companies will provide relevant content for candidates to review prior to the interview, to brush up on their knowledge of the company and any recent press or leadership changes.
10. Help with travel for appropriate candidates
Of course, travel expenses can easily inflate the cost per hire metric. However, in many cases they are absolutely a necessity—especially for hard to fill positions. When helping candidates get to your office for an interview, it is crucial to make the experience as seamless as possible, either booking travel and accommodations for them or simplifying the process of reimbursing expenses. Small mix-ups in these areas could significantly impact candidate experience, and even compromise the candidate’s perception of your company as a professional organization.
11. Ask relevant questions during the interview
Going into an interview, candidates’ usually have an idea regarding which types of questions will be asked. They perceive the interview to be fair when questions asked align with their expectations based on the job description. For purposes of improving candidate experience, it’s important to respect this and stick with relevant questions. The Talent Board showed that only 45% of candidates indicated they strongly agree that most questions were relevant for the job. If you throw too many odd-ball questions at a candidate, they could deem the experience unfair and leave with a negative perception of your company.
12. Simplify the candidate follow-up process after interviews
Recruiters and hiring managers expect candidates to follow up after an interview, and yet more than 70% of employers are not providing more than an interviewers’ name or background.
Companies that provide candidates with all of the information they need to follow-up in an email or during the actual interview will likely have a better candidate experience. As explained by The Talent Board, “Technology has advanced over the past year and now plays a role in helping companies streamline this process and communicate with candidates.” Think about how you can use technology to ensure candidates get the right information when they need it.
13. Be clear in next steps after each interview
Clarity is key in keeping candidates engaged and providing them with a good experience throughout the interview process. Although hiring managers and recruiters have a lot going on, they must keep the candidate in mind at all times. As shown in The Talent Board’s report, “At the conclusion of the interview, 34% of candidate respondents indicated that the hiring manager explained what would happen next and followed up as indicated, while 23% said they did not receive any additional information, follow-up or next steps.”
Got an other job interview process best practices or tips? Let us know at @Jibe.
If you’re interested in taking your candidate experience initiative to the next level, then you’re going to want to read our eBook, The Path to an Exceptional Candidate Experience. You can find it below!